Yield Ratio

What is a Yield Ratio in HR and recruiting?

The Percentage of an applicant pool that advances to the next stage in the hiring process.

Example

The Assistant Manager position had a 20% yield ratio from the application to the phone screen stage. Only 1-in-5 applicants were contacted for a phone interview.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why does Yield Ratio matter when hiring?Yield Ratio is a hugely important metric to calculate when recruiting and hiring as it helps you determine how effective your recruiting is at finding qualified applicants. A low Yield Ratio means you’re getting a lot of chaff and not much wheat: plenty of low-quality applications but very few qualified enough to advance to the next stage.

    Additionally, Yield Ratio can help determine pinch points and potential bias within your hiring process. If you see a stage in the interview process with an unusually low Yield Ratio relative to the other stages or a Yield Ratio that reveals a gender imbalance (for example), this may be a sign that you’ve got an interviewer with internal bias, an unrealistically difficult performance test, or something else that’s perhaps unnecessarily weeding out strong and qualified applicants.

  • How do you determine your Yield Ratio when recruiting?Yield Ratio may sound complex, but fortunately, calculating Yield Ratio is easy. Your Yield Ratio is calculated as follows:

    (Number of applicants in stage 2) / (number of applicants in stage 1) x 100

    To give an example with real numbers, if you had 20 applicants and brought in 6 for an interview, you’d calculate your Yield Ratio as such:

    6 / 20 x 100

    =

    0.3 x 100

    =

    30% Yield Ratio

  • What’s a good Yield Ratio when hiring?There is no single answer about what Yield Ratio you should be targeting when hiring, as every industry, organization, role, and stage of the hiring process is different. Very broadly, studies indicate that on average, the Yield Ratio from the application to the first-round interview stage sits at between 10-15%, but that can vary based on year and industry.

    As a general rule, the higher your Yield Ratio is, the more effective your recruitment targeting: if you have a Yield Ratio of 100% from the application to the interview stage, that means that every single applicant was deemed qualified enough to be granted an interview, while if the Yield Ratio at that same stage is 0%, it means you aren’t attracted any qualified applicants whatsoever.

  • How can I improve my recruiting Yield Ratio?Improving your recruiting Yield Ratio is mostly a matter of targeting the right prospects with the right materials to ensure that you attract high-quality, relevant applicants without also being inundated with unqualified job seekers.

    An organization can improve its Yield Ratio when hiring by marketing itself as an attractive place to work – that means eye-catching employer branding, leveraging strong reputations in your field, and writing job descriptions that are clear, thorough, and engaging. It also means making sure that your candidate portal is asking the right questions without putting off strong applicants, and that your recruiting platforms are posting your job openings in the right places, rather than just spamming every job board no matter the relevancy.

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